Research Paper Volume 13, Issue 7 pp 9566—9581

miR-20b and miR-125a promote tumorigenesis in radioresistant esophageal carcinoma cells

Didi Chen1, *, , Huafang Su1, *, , Yunhao Li1, , Xinyi Wu1, , Yifei Li1, , Chaoyi Wei1, , Deli Shi1, , Ya Gao1, , Qingyu Zhou1, , Qiongqiong Wang1, , Xiance Jin1, , Congying Xie1, ,

  • 1 Department of Radiation and Medical Oncology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Wenzhou Medical University, Wenzhou, Zhejiang, China
* Equal contribution

Received: February 13, 2020       Accepted: November 20, 2020       Published: March 10, 2021
How to Cite

Copyright: © 2021 Chen et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.


Radiation therapy is an effective method in the management of esophageal cancer. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) have been reported to play an important role in tumorigenesis. However, the roles of specific miRNAs in radioresistant esophageal cancer remain to be investigated. In present study, the relative expression level of miR-20b-5p and miR-125a-5p were evaluated by quantitative Real-time polymerase chain reaction. Cell counting Kit-8 assay, wound-healing assay, transwell assay were used to assess cell proliferation, cell migration and cell invasion. TUNEL and Annexin V-FITC assays were applied to evaluate cell apoptosis. Dual-luciferase reporter gene assay was conducted to identify direct targets of miRNAs. The protein expression level was assessed by Western blot. The results indicated that miR-20b-5p was increased in radioresistant KYSE-150R cells compared with KYSE-150 cells, whereas miR-125a-5p was downregulated. MiR-20b-5p upregulation promoted cell proliferation, migration, invasion, and the EMT process, and decreased apoptosis by negatively regulating PTEN. MiR-125a-5p inhibited cell proliferation, migration, invasion, the EMT process and it induced apoptosis by negatively regulating IL6R. These data indicate that miR-20b-5p and miR-125a-5p promote tumorigenesis in radioresistant KYSE-150R cells and have the potential to be used as novel therapeutic targets for the treatment of esophageal cancer.


EC: esophageal cancer; EMT: epithelial to mesenchymal transition; PTEN: phosphatase and tensin homolog; IL6R: Interleukin-6 receptor.